Tributes paid as Michael, 15, dies

Tributes have been paid to a young County Upper School student who died suddenly over the Easter weekend.

Michael Woodhouse, 15, who suffered from Muscular Dystrophy, died of pneumonia at Addenbrooke's Hospital, in Cambridge, on Easter Monday.

Michael's mother, Michelle, said: "It is surprising how many people's lives Michael touched.

"He had the biggest heart in the world and he was so easy going. He seemed to like everybody."

Having suffered from the muscle wasting condition all his life, Michael had been studying for his GCSEs at the Bury St Edmunds school.

Despite using a wheelchair for the past 11 years, the teenager was making his way through school life.

Mrs Woodhouse said: "Michael accepted his condition and whatever he did, he did his best.

"He adored animals and enjoyed going to school. He had lots of friends and the teachers liked him."

Michael and his family moved to a specially adapted home with a downstairs bedroom and shower in Meadow Way, in Barrow, in 2000.

Built as part of a 1.2 million housing project by Suffolk Housing Society, an eight-year-old Michael was thrilled to help to demolish his old home in Ley Road, Barrow.

Mrs Woodhouse said: "Michael just loved the new house because everything was on his level.

"He really enjoyed smashing the old house down but he didn't like bringing attention on himself."

Staff and students at County Upper School held a special memorial service for Michael last week and head boy Matthew Fletcher played the organ at Michael's funeral in Barrow church on Wednesday.

Headteacher Vicki Neale said: "Michael was a true County Upper School boy who was very open and loyal to his friends and the school.

"We are all very sad. He was really well liked. We all saw past the wheelchair and just saw Michael."